The Grassroots Channel is here to provoke and inspire anyone who thinks they might just want to change the world around them. We share stories and ideas from people taking practical steps to build stronger neighbourhoods and happier communities.

Grassroots Podcast: Initiative Brokers, the Big Society and making community wishes come true

Posted on 11th May 2011 by
Corian Huhenholtz-Sasse  and Rinske van Noortwijk

Corian Huhenholtz-Sasse and Rinske van Noortwijk

Meet Rinske van Noortwijk and Corian Hugenholtz-Sasse  – they make wishes come true.


I met them both in Rotterdam, invited through the wonderful Maurice Specht to speak to the Association of Initiative Brokers ( @inimakelaar )  in Holland, organised by Rinske.

Two days before, Tessy Britton and I had been in The Hague speaking to senior civil servants from Dutch central government.  (more…)

Grassroots Channel Podcast Willem Guizeman on "being there" – slow, steady community building

Posted on 3rd May 2011 by
Willem Guizeman and Nol

Nol and Willem - Gray Man Bald Man

It’s odd how when you look away your friends seem to go and do some really interesting stuff. I first met Willem Guizeman in 2005 when he was in Birmingham planning some work on the Residents university for the Residents for Regeneration.  Then he was fronting a Europe wide organisation which was working with the EU.

Last month we saw each other again in The Hague,  his home town.  Now Willem is doing something much more (more…)

Leading the way for young people: A new podcast from the Grassroots Channel

Posted on 20th October 2009 by
Pype Hayes Community Focus

Joshua Barwell and Carl Sheward

Carl Sheward and Joshua Barwell are two Junior Volunteer playworkers at Pype Hayes Community Focus. Both 16-years-old, when they are not studying for AS-levels they are spending their free time getting those younger than them involved, doing fun days and activities.

For their effort and heart for the community at such a young age, the Junior Playworker Co-ordinator has nominated them both for the Young Persons Birmingham Local Hearts award. They both agree the work is rewarding, and possibly see themselves forging a career in community work.  Here’s their story.


Helping the community where we can: A new podcast from the Grassroots Channel

Posted on 20th October 2009 by
Dolores Pinkley and Kevin Duffy

Dolores Pinkney and Kevin Duffy

This is the story of Dolores Pinkney who runs the Dojo project in Handworth. She has been working tirelessly for her community since she moved to Birmingham with her family in the 1960s, and now she has been nominated by Kevin Duffy for Birmingham City Council’s Local Hearts Awards in the active citizen category.

She says her parents were her inspiration – they opened up their home to everyone in the area and it became a focal point of the community. Now with her brother Hector, who works at Handsworth Library, Dolores has continued her parents’ legacy with the Dojo project.   It ranges from jogging sessions on Tuesdays & Sundays to securing the lease to build a community play centre on the derelict site of the Hockley flyover.

Dolores says her motivation is “encouraging everyone that we meet, enabling and empowering,” and if someone is there who needs help, she cannot turn them away. Here’s her story.